How do I enroll?
The first step to enrolling is choosing the instructor best suited to your needs. Our staff is here to help you with this important decision! Call or email us so we can discuss the student’s age and level of experience, scheduling limitations, specific styles or techniques, and any other considerations. This info will be relayed to the appropriate instructor, who will contact you within 48 hours to answer further questions and schedule a lesson time. At your first lesson you will receive an enrollment form to complete and hand in to the school office.
Where is the school located, and what amenities do you have?
AMS is located in downtown Asheville at 126 College St., adjacent to The Twisted Laurel restaurant. Follow this link for a map. The school occupies the 3rd floor overlooking Pack Square Park. We have 15 music studios. All are equipped with pianos, and some with drum kits. We have a spacious waiting area with Wi Fi where parents and siblings can work, socialize, or do homework.
Where can I park?
The College Street Parking Deck, located one block east of the school across from the court house, always has spaces and costs $1 per hour. Weekdays after 5 PM there are free lots near the school that open to the public, including the Thomas Wolfe Memorial behind Asheville Community Theatre, and the Police lot behind Pack’s Tavern. Metered street parking is $1.25/hour; free on Sundays, holidays and after 6 PM on weekdays. We keep a stash of quarters in the office if you need change for meters, or you can upload a parking phone app.
How much is lesson tuition, and when is it due?
Tuition for private lessons is set by, and paid directly to, your teacher. Teachers’ tuition rates are published on their bio pages and currently range from $95 to $120 per month for a weekly 30-minute private lesson. Tuition is paid in advance and is due on the last week, or last lesson, of each month for the following month.
Are there any other fees in addition to tuition?
There is an annual membership fee of $55 per family collected at your first lesson, then yearly on your enrollment anniversary month. This fee, payable to AMS, covers recital costs and helps defray operating overhead. We accept cash, checks and credit cards. AMS membership benefits include:
• two student recitals each year
• discounts on summer camps and workshops
• listing in the AMS Business Network on our website
• e-newsletters and special mailings
Do you offer scholarships?
Yes, AMS offers need-based scholarships. Go to Scholarships page for detailed info on how to apply.
What is the appropriate age to begin lessons?
It depends on the instrument. Children can typically start on piano at age 3 ½; violin/viola at 4; cello at five; guitar at 6; drums at 7. Most of the band instruments we can start at age 9 or 10. For other instruments, please contact the office so a staff member can advise you. You can also check teachers’ bio pages for a listing of the ages they typically teach. Adults- it’s never too late to start learning music!
Does AMS offer lessons to adults?
Absolutely! We have many adult students at AMS. They even perform in our recitals, and sometimes they form ensembles.
How long do I have to take lessons before I’m good?
Many facets determine the answer to this question, including: How motivated are you? Do you have access to an instrument at home? And the Big One: are you committed to regular practice? A daily practice regime of 30 minutes (20 minutes for younger beginners) will yield good results. More important than the amount of time you practice is the consistency of practice. Though we recommend weekly half-hour lessons for beginners, students with more experience will progress quickly with longer and/or more frequent lessons.
Do you have student recitals?
Recitals are held twice a year in the spring and winter. Though we strongly encourage students to participate, recitals are not mandatory. We hold recitals in the Loft, our own performance space, and sometimes at outside venues. You will receive notice of the dates and location for recitals well in advance.
What does AMS offer besides private lessons?
Our popular Summer Camp program has one-week camp experiences in a variety of music styles for ages 4 – 18. Students with some experience may audition for one of our Outreach Ensembles. And we occasionally offer workshops with AMS faculty and guest artists. Be sure to read our e-newsletter to keep up on current offerings.
Are there lessons offered in the summer?
Absolutely, summer is a great time for lessons. We will gladly work around your vacation and camp schedules.
Are gift certificates and merchandise available?
Yes! Call or email the office and we’ll help you with purchasing a gift certificate in any amount that may be used to take lessons with any instructor. We also have AMS T-shirts, sweatshirts, tote bags, and CDs for sale.